Clove production accounts for a large part of Madagascar’s exports with around 7.3% of the value, and provides the livelihoods of many families (about 30 000 producers) on the east coast of the country, more specifically in the Fenerive-Est area.
The global demand for cloves for spice market and clove essential oil is increasing year after year, whereas production is regularly affected by storms or cyclones, particularly in Madagascar which is the second largest producer in the world. This endangers the sustainability of the production.
Quimdis has always been a major trader of clove leaf oil and is quite concerned by the increasing gap between declining production and the necessity to ensure a regular supply to all customers worldwide.
For this reason, in 2014, Quimdis decided to commit to a responsible approach and support the production through a local partner: CTHT (Centre Technique Horticole de Tamatave – www.ctht.org). The aim was to launch a replanting program of 5 000 clove trees per year over 5 years in order to renew the resources.
After 3 years, 15.000 trees have been distributed to farmers and planted around Mahavanona, Antetezampafana and Ambodimandresy, 3 villages located 110 km north of Toamasina, in the rural commune of Ambodimanga II, East Fenerive District.
As usual, each farmer receives a logbook for the plants which are granted to him. The monitoring of plant development by the CTHT consists of a bimonthly follow-up during the first four months after planting and then a quarterly follow up for the three years monitoring the plant growth, each operation being the subject of a report recorded in the logbook.
The CTHT annually provides Quimdis with all information relating to this operation and its development.
So far, at the third stage of this program, 38 hectares of new clove plantations have been achieved benefiting to 282 families, i.e. about 1000 people.
The first batch of trees will come into production in 2018-2019 and the farmers are free to market their products (dried cloves, clove leaf or clove bud oil) wherever they wish, knowing that at this stage, they are raw and will have to undergo several sorting, filtering, inspection and repacking steps before they are ready for export.
In the meantime, 2 side projects will be launched, one consisting in extensive plantation of other species of trees in order to provide the wood for heating the stills, and another one for the revision of the stills which would lead to reducing the distillation time (thus wood consumption) by half while increasing the yield in oil.
To answer one of these villages’ first request made in 2015, a well has been dug and drinkable water is now coming from a source to the village where several fountains have been installed for the benefit of everyone including the school.
Thanks to this development, the population and the activity of these villages are now growing consistently.